Archive for July 24th, 2013

kevin durant

USA Basketball Chairman Jerry Colangelo and USA Basketball Men’s National Team head coach Mike Krzyzewski (Duke University) announced at the conclusion of today’s National Team mini-camp in Las Vegas, Nev., that Kevin Durant (Oklahoma City Thunder) and Kevin Love (Minnesota Timberwolves), winners of gold medals at the 2010 FIBA World Championship and 2012 London Olympics, had confirmed they planned to be part of the USA Basketball National Team program through 2016 and will participate in next year’s FIBA Basketball World Cup that will be held Aug. 30-Sept. 14, 2014, in Spain.

“Kevin Durant and Kevin Love have officially announced that they will be a part of our future going forward, including the World Cup next summer, and it means a great deal to us because of how committed they are to our program and we are very appreciative of their early commitment,” said Colangelo when speaking to media following Wednesday’s USA National Team mini-camp practice. “We think it will certainly send a message to some of our other guys, who have indicated they are interested, and so we are very excited.”

“To represent your country, you can’t really take that for granted, so I knew last summer I was going to commit and play this next World Cup,” said Durant, who averaged a U.S. team high 19.5 points per game at the 2012 Olympics and who was named MVP of the 2010 World Championship after posting 22.8 points a game. “I’m looking forward to the opportunity, man, playing against the best in the world with the best in the world, so it should be fun.”

Kevin Love

The 6′10″ Love, who averaged 11.6 points and a team leading 7.6 rebounds per game during the 2012 Olympics, echoed Durant’s comments, stating, “K.D. mentioned it, just being a part of USA Basketball has meant a lot for my career. I’ve been a part of the World Championship team in 2010 and the 2012 Olympic Team in London, just coming off of last summer and then heading forward, just being a part of the family. Jerry and Coach keep mentioning being part of the USA Basketball family, and heading forward we are looking for bigger and brighter things.”

“It’s an exciting day and no more appropriate time to do it than when we are also adding this influx of new, young talent,” said USA and Duke University mentor Krzyzewski.  ”For these veterans, although they are not old guys yet, for these veterans to make that commitment is a huge step. You have gold medal winners in two events. Both of them were 21-year-old guys when we won in Istanbul (2010 FIBA World Championship) and then at 23 they won gold medals (in the 2012 London Olympic Games). They now are the leadership. They are part of the leadership of our program, and they’ve been committed. Kevin (Durant), this is the first camp that we’ve been involved in that he hasn’t been a participant. So, he started when we as 17. He (Kevin Love) started when we was young. It’s the program that Jerry has started since he took over, and it’s paying a lot of dividends. So, it’s an exciting day for USA Basketball; a big day.”

The announcement came in Las Vegas following the final USA National Team mini-camp practice session. The mini-camp, which opened July 22, will close with the 2013 USA Basketball Showcase, a blue-white intra-squad game on Thursday, July 25, 6 p.m. PDT at the Thomas & Mack Arena on the campus of UNLV.

Derek Fisher returns to the OKC Thunder

Derek Fisher returns to the OKC Thunder

The Oklahoma City Thunder has signed guard Derek Fisher, it was announced today by Executive Vice President and General Manager Sam Presti.

“Derek has proven to be a valuable member of our team and we are excited to have him back,” Presti said. “He has such a positive impact on his teammates and the organization.”

Fisher has appeared in 44 regular season games with Oklahoma City during the past two seasons, averaging 4.5 points, 1.0 assist and 1.2 rebounds in 17.1 minutes per game. In 31 playoff games with the Thunder, he averaged 7.1 points, 1.6 rebounds, 1.1 assists and 22.8 minutes per game.

A five-time NBA champion, Fisher has appeared in 240 career playoff games (158 starts) averaging 8.6 points, 2.4 assists, 2.3 rebounds, 1.1 steals and 27.3 minutes per contest.

Kenyon Martin is re-signing with Knicks

Kenyon Martin is re-signing with Knicks

The Knicks’ final major free-agent domino has fallen.

Kenyon Martin reached an agreement with New York on Wednesday afternoon, agent Andy Miller said.

The Knicks now have eight rotation players back from last season’s roster.

Mike Woodson may have his hands full trying to define roles for all those players along with newcomers Metta World Peace and Andrea Bargnani.

But Martin’s role is to be well-defined: protect the paint, defend the rim and rebound…

Outside of Martin, Tyson Chandler and World Peace, the Knicks don’t have many players who can defend the paint. Depending on their remaining signings, Martin’s health could be crucial for the Knicks in 2013-14.

Reported by Ian Begley of ESPN New York

Atlanta Hawks will sign Pero Antic

According to the agent for Pero Antic, the European power forward/center has agreed to a two-year contract with the Hawks. Misko Raznatovic stated the news Wednesday on Twitter.

The Hawks have not announced the signing as there likely are details that must be finalized. According to Raznatovic, the second year of the deal is an option.

Antic, 6-foot-11, 260 pounds, played in the Greek League the past two seasons. He helped Olympiacos to consecutive Euroleague championships.

Reported by Chris Vivlamore of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution

The Golden State Warriors have waived forward/center Dwayne Jones, guard Scott Machado and guard Kevin Murphy, the team announced today.

Jones was signed by Golden State as a free agent on the final day of the 2012-13 regular season (April 17, 2013) and appeared briefly in two playoffs games with the Warriors. Prior to signing with the Warriors, he had appeared in 21 games for the Texas Legends of the NBA Development League, averaging 8.8 points, 12.6 rebounds and 1.4 assists per contests.

Machado was originally signed by Golden State as a free agent call-up from the Santa Cruz Warriors on April 7, 2013, and appeared briefly in five playoff games with the Warriors. He also appeared in six games with the Houston Rockets last season and spent significant time in the D-League, averaging 8.9 points, 2.5 rebounds and 5.1 assists per game in 28 contests combined between Santa Cruz and the Rio Grande Valley Vipers.

Murphy was acquired from the Utah Jazz on July 10, 2013, as part of the three-team trade highlighted by the acquisition of Andre Iguodala. As a rookie last season with the Jazz, Murphy appeared in 17 games and averaged 0.9 points in 3.1 minutes per contest. He also appeared in 14 games with the D-League’s Reno Bighorns, averaging 13.2 points, 3.1 rebounds and 1.6 assists in 28.6 minutes per contest.

Golden State’s roster currently stands at 13 players.

The Dallas Mavericks announced today they have signed second round pick Ricky Ledo.

The Mavericks acquired the draft rights to 43rd overall pick from the Philadelphia 76ers in exchange for a 2014 second round pick that was originally sent to the Mavericks from Boston (via Brooklyn) in a deal that also included the draft rights to 16th overall pick Lucas Nogueira.

Ledo (6-7, 195) attended Providence University where he was ruled ineligible by the NCAA, but continued to practice with the Friars.

Before arriving in Providence, Ledo was a Jordan All-American at South Kent (Conn.) High School where he averaged 23.4 points and 6.2 rebounds in his senior season. Scout.com ranked him as the No. 5 shooting guard and No. 17 overall prospect after his senior season of high school.

InsideHoops.com video of Kevin Durant and Kevin Love practicing moves together at the USA Basketball mini-camp in Las Vegas:

Miami Heat, other teams watch Greg Oden workout

Heat coach Erik Spoelstra met with Greg Oden and watched him work out Tuesday in Indianapolis, as Miami continued to explore signing the seven-foot center whose career has been sidetracked by knee injuries.

Chet Kammerer, the Heat’s vice president/player personnel, joined Spoelstra at the workout, which was also attended by officials from the Sacramento Kings and New Orleans Pelicans.

Bill Duffy, one of Oden’s agents, said Oden likely will pick a team next week and that every team that has shown interest “remains under strong consideration.”

Besides the Heat, Kings and Pelicans, that list also includes the Mavericks and Spurs — who met with Oden previously — and the Atlanta Hawks, who will watch him work out Thursday.

Another of Oden’s agents, Mike Conley Sr., said last week the Heat has as good a chance of any team but stopped short of calling Miami the front-runner.

Reported by Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald

Cavs happy to have landed Sergey Karasev

One of the things David Griffin, Cavaliers vice president of basketball operations, said he loves about the organization is that the team’s ownership is “willing to invest in the process.”

It’s what allowed the Cavs to take time and to send multiple scouts to Europe to watch Sergey Karasev from St. Petersburg, Russia, play on junior national teams and in All-Star events on the international stage. That due diligence eventually led to the team targeting and then taking Karasev with the 19th pick in the first round of the NBA Draft.

“Throughout that process, what we were really excited about was his skill-set,” Griffin said Tuesday at Cleveland Clinic Courts. “His basketball IQ is excellent. He’s a very accomplished young player. To lead the Russian league in scoring at the age he did is unprecedented. He’s somebody, with his skill-set, [who] really spoke to us.”

Karasev, a 6-foot-7 left-hander with a good shooting stroke, according to many scouting reports, also has good court presence and is able to score with his right or left hand. That ambidexterity came about as Karasev shot with his left hand but off the court often lived as a righty.

Reported by Ryan Lewis of the Akron Beacon Journal

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